Buying Guide: How to Choose Hanging Ab Straps

Step-by-step Instructions

Here is what you need to do...
Step 1

Hanging leg raises are awesome exercises for the abs- arguably the best. But, doing them while holding onto a pullup bar can be difficult, mainly because your grip on the bar slips after a while. Wrist straps can help this problem, but not entirely. In order to bypass forearm weakness and make hanging leg raises entirely about the abs, you need a pair of hanging ab straps.

Step 2

When it comes down to it, you simply need to figure out how invested you are into weightlifting. If you're just doing it occasionally for fun and a little extra buffness before a weekend of parties, buy the cheap straps and call it a day.

Step 3

Some are elastic and some are nylon. The cheap elastic version will not last as long as nylon

Step 4

Some ab straps are constructed of canvas. Others are made with polyester.

Step 5

Some have steel carabiners that clip onto a bar and are easier to handle. Those hold more weight, but are more expensive.

Step 6

Padding and width of the band are important features to look for because padding and width makes the band more comfortable to use.

Step 7

Consider ease of cleaning and maintenance. Can you put the ab strap into a washing machine?

Step 8

Some models include accessories. Does an item include carabiners or special clips?

Step 9

Some models come with an instruction manual or training tips.

Step 10

If it includes a warranty, how long is the warranty? Are there any fees associated with getting the item repaired or replaced?

Step 11

Consider padding. Some ab straps have padding on the inside area that holds the elbows. It prevents your arms from chafing.

Step 12

Below, I'll talk about three different sets of straps. Some expensive, some cheap. Check it out.

Step 13

Let's start with the cheapest version. Iron Gym offers a pair of ab straps that, work perfectly as an accessory to the Iron Gym pullup bar that you put in a door frame of your house. These straps hang from a perpendicularly protruding portion of the pullup bar. Most pullup bars in gyms actually have these protruding portions. And for that reason I think these straps are worthy of being recommended. The straps stretch about a foot down. And they're made out of an elastic material. They'll hold up to 300 pounds and they are lightly padded where your elbows fit. While these straps probably won't last for 20 years, they'll certainly be effective for a somewhat extended period of time. Not to mention that they're extremely cheap at only $13.85+S&H. For the beginner or the broke college student, this is a fine pair of straps. But they only work if there's a perpendicular protruding portion of the pullup bar. So, make sure your gym has this feature and you're good to go.

Step 14

Next is Harbinger's 371000 Deluxe Ab Straps. These straps can be used at any gym with a pullup bar. Rather than being attached on their own, they come with a forged steel carbine that hooks onto the pullup bar to guarantee your safety. The material is nylon. But it's a heavy duty nylon that can sustain a lot of weight and will last for a very, very long time. The part of the strap in which your elbows rest is layered with foam that is somewhat comfortable. If you're looking for a pair of ab straps that will last you a long time and are sure to get the job done safely, these are for you. They're moderately expensive at $39.99 plus shipping cost. But they'll last so long that the price will eventually be forgotten. For the constant gym-goer, these are solid ab straps that are well worth the price.

Step 15

SPRI's Hanging Ab Straps are definitely the best when it comes to comfort, security, and endurance without breakage. They're pretty pricey, costing $45.32 plus shipping cost, but well worth the money if you're a hardcore lifter. They have a lot of added padding in the elbow area, offering a ton of comfort during extended sets of leg raises. They're wide and very stretchy, which allows people of all weights to fit nicely inside of the straps during leg raises. The material is top-grade and will last for an extremely long time. These straps also come with a steel carbine that attaches to any pullup bar in any gym. Overall, they're the best that money can buy. When it comes to getting your money's worth, these straps fit the bill. You can probably give these comfortable elbow clouds to your children. And they can probably give them to their children. By then the $45.32 will seem like nothing. So, if you're really in the weightlifting scene for what feels like a long haul, these might be the best bet for you.

Step 16

If you're really into pumping the iron, buy the Harbinger or SPRI straps. All are good, but there are obvious levels of differences. Choose for yourself and choose wisely.

Special Attention

Difficulties people often experience or parts that need special attention to do it right.

Some are elastic and some are nylon. The cheap elastic version will not last as long.

Stuff You'll Need

Suggested Further Reading

Author Title Price
Billy Blanks: Ab Bootcamp $11.95

This Student Author

This Student Author's Background

Funny or interesting story about this topic...

There was this kid who had a pair of hanging ab straps at the first gym I ever went to. He would strap those suckers up to the pullup bar every. single. day. and he would commence to hang there and do leg raises until he was too tired to do anymore. Me- I did my hanging leg raises by physically gripping the pullup bar and hanging there. It took a while for me to realize that the reason this kid could do so damn many leg raises wasn't necessarily because he had a tough set of abs, but because he didn't have to worry about his grip going out. I, on the other hand, was losing grip strength after about 12 reps in each set, which limited the amount of work I was letting my abs do. I learned a valuable lesson from watching that damn kid with his straps. You guys should be so lucky that you're learning this the easy way, from me; instead of from some gloater who does as many leg raises as there are dumbbells in the room.

When did you first do this & how did you get started?

I got my first pair of hanging ab straps when I was a freshman in college. Surprisingly, I was one of the only kids (if not the only kid) to have them. I strapped those things up every time I could, and the amount of leg raises I was able to do was insane. My abs have never been happier. So look at the links above and get yourself the most according pair of straps, then get to hangin' and raisin'. Happy lifting,

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